Friday, January 2, 2015

Freezer prep cooking with friends- Part 3 - Prep and Take home notes!

 So prep day was a big day!  First some pictures..
90% of this food will be used today.  There is a gallon of milk and some lettuce and string cheese that is mine.  HA

Lots of canned goods

Onions.  Lord have mercy did we cry!!!!

Spices.  Lots and lots of spices.  I buy them in bulk at a local amish store.  So much cheaper and they are good.

Let the chopping commence

Just keep chopping.

Just keep chopping.  I think at this point we were all crying.  There were so many onions

The floor was a mess after all the chopping.

We cooked all afternoon....this is what we ate for dinner!

We started by writing all the recipe names and cooking directions on the freezer baggies.  I didn't get gumbo on the list.  If someone wants those please ask.  I didn't write I'll have to ask.

Since I brought all the recipes together I sent each family home with a copy of the recipes and a list of the ingredients they will need to have on hand for serving.  It looks like THIS!

I put the spreadsheet, printed recipes, and take home notes in a binder so I can do this set of recipes again without any work.  I can also make notes on the recipe itself on what we think.  If we hate one, it will be easy to cut that recipe out of the set because each recipe is listed individually on the spreadsheet.

I had chopping directions written on my handy dandy white board....and we each picked different veggies.  We chopped and chopped and chopped.  Only veggies.  We saved the onions for last and after those took a coffee and snacks break.  Save the meat for when you are ready to bag it.  Don't want chicken setting out or chicken juice spreading where it doesn't belong.  eeeeeewwwww!

Then we started bagging (I forgot to take pictures).  But we put the freezer bags in half gallon pitchers to hold them upright.  As we started we each took an ingredient and passed the pitchers around the table.  We found by the end it was easier to leave the pitchers stationary and take your ingredient to them.  That way you knew which ones you'd added to.

As we came to the end it was clear that the dry beans did not make as much as I'd thought they would and we did not have enough beans to make the enchiladas.  So we divided the softshells and cheese for those and everyone took those home.  We added the corn to the gumbo (not traditional but it won't hurt).  The canned goods I will work into the menu next time.  Cause there will be a next time.

Overall, it took us 4 hours.  We each got 10 meals for our freezer so 50 meals in total.  As you can see there are only 4 moms in the wasn't able to make it so we bagged hers for her!  We had a great time!!

Other than the bagging "style" the other things we will do differently is to:
1) leave the broth out of the freezer bags.  they leak.  :(
2) next time I will not include meat in the groceries I buy.  Instead I will give each mom a list of what meats to bring with her and how they need to be chopped/prepped (brown the burger)....

Yay!  Eleven Ten crockpot meals prepped and ready to go in my freezer.  What a successful and prepared feeling!

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